Monday, April 5, 2010

The Pope and a slippery slope

   Some within TDLR are suggesting that that agency might not require compliance with the statutorily required text mentioned in 2308.301 b) 5) of the Texas Occupations Code as far as the words "or Booted" are concerned.   Is TDLR so removed from the reality of us taxpayers that it fails to realize that towing companies often engage in booting, too?    At any rate, how would TDLR's reluctance to uphold that part of our law be fair to diligent towing companies and parking facilities that have already come into compliance with it?  
     If TDLR thinks it's above the law and not required to enforce what the Texas legislature has enacted, how can we expect towing companies to respect the legislature's laws enough to comply with them?   Anybody within TDLR who advocates disregarding parts of the law risk putting Texas' towing protections on a SLIPPERY SLOPE to mediocrity, if not lawlessness.   Our economy suffers when folks become afraid to park because of such lawlessness, too.   So WHERE SHOULD ONE DRAW THE LINE regarding which parts of the statute to obey and which ones to disregard?   Are we letting the POPE get away with his staff's noncompliance with Biblical scripture?   No.   Easter news headlines made that abundantly clear.    Shouldn't an agency that gets paid with our tax dollars to bring towing companies into compliance with the law also comply with the law, too?    I urge TDLR to come into compliance, or to pass the responsibility (and our corresponding tax dollars and trust) to an agency that will.  
  It's expected of law enforcement in towns across the state to enforce criminal laws and now since illegal towing is a Class B misdemeanor, that common response, "it's a civil matter does hold water any longer.
  We must remember, it's the legislature that agreed problems are continuing with private property towing industry in every city in our state, citizens cannot rely on TDLR in seeking compliance, since their agency's bureaucracy drags complaints out for a year or more, doing no good to victims. Therefore, the criminal penalty was increased that would law enforcement to take the necessary steps to shutdown criminal illegal towing in their community. 

  If TDLR really wants to take an activist role with the statute in ways that actually help taxpayers and honest towing companies, why hasn't it clarified what "minor deviation" can permissibly mean regarding the 5 feet signage height requirement of 2308.301 a) 5)?    After all, 2308.407 says "a minor variation of a required or minimum height of a sign or lettering is not a violation of this chapter".   The vagueness has been abused by some campaign donation-seeking j.p. judges in parts of Texas, and it's time for TDLR to take the lead, or to get out of the way.   The moment TDLR begins selecting provisions of the statute as being unenforceable, Texans will have become more vulnerable to j.p. judges who abuse the law badly enough as it is, in exchange for campaign donations.   If TDLR's no better, why must we taxpayers keep subsidizing it?    Please take the moral high road, so that our roadways won't be as crime-ridden.  

  It's been eight months since the law changed reference the changes in signage text and parking facilities nor towing compliance have done nothing to comply.